“Dark money group seeks investigation of Kansas Supreme Court justice”

Bryan Lowry for the Wichita Eagle:

A national dark money group has revived a 2-year-old controversy involving a Kansas Supreme Court justice and filed an ethics complaint with the state’s Commission on Judicial Qualifications.

The Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust, which is based in Washington, D.C., sent a letter to commission on Aug. 19 asking it to investigate Justice Carol Beier over a political fundraiser her husband hosted for Democrat Paul Davis in 2014.

“Justice Beier needs to be held accountable for her careless behavior because even the mere appearance of impropriety calls into question her impartiality and erodes the public’s trust in our government,” said Matthew Whitaker, the group’s executive director, in a news release announcing the complaint Monday….

The foundation’s website says that it’s an “organization dedicated to promoting accountability, ethics, and transparency in government and civic arenas by hanging a lantern over public officials who put their own interests over the interests of the public good.”

The foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization and therefore not required to disclose its donors under federal law.

Arnold said in an e-mail that “FACT actually doesn’t know who its donors” because it receives it funding through DonorsTrust.

Open Secrets, a website which tracks political spending, has described DonorsTrust as “a pass-through vessel” which enables wealthy donors, such as Charles Koch, to remain anonymous when giving to political advocacy groups.

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